Quick recap for those of you not familiar with Slicethepie: it’s a site where you can invest in bands. Artists upload tracks, reviewers get paid to review them, and the highest-rated artists go through to a ‘showcase’ where anyone can ‘invest’ in the band.
When the investment reaches a certain level, the band go to a studio and make an album. In return for investing in an artist, you get free tracks, as well as a share of their album’s commercial success. It’s a simple concept, and a great alternative to the traditional ‘try and get signed’ approach for bands.
The site has just spruced itself up, however, with a few updates. Firstly, the fan financing system has now been opened up to established bands and their labels. This means that Coldplay could go on the site tomorrow, for example, and raise cash for a forthcoming album, in exchange for a share of the profits of that album going to the investors.
Secondly, the choice of artists for investment has been expanded – there are now 100 available at any one time. Also, you’ll be able to transfer your investment between artists, and invest any sum as little as £1.
Lastly, artists will now be able to upload 10 tracks (up from three), though only three will be able to be ‘live’ at any one time. This is so that bands can get some feedback on the merits of one song over another. The site suggests it might be used to pick which song is the single, for example.
Slicethepie is a great, innovative site, with a democratic approach to funding music. If you’re remotely interested in the future of music, then I suggest you go sign up and check it out. Who knows, you might discover the next Pink Floyd. Oh, and if you are interested in digital music, you might like my weekly column on the subject – Noise Gate.
By Duncan Geere | November 27th, 2008